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Sunday Old School: Hatebreed

Photo of Hatebreed

Band Photo: Hatebreed (?)

The relationship between metal and hardcore is a funny one. Both the rivalry and the influences stem back to punk rock, which was initially something anti-heavy metal, before the likes of Motorhead showed both fan bases that common ground could be reached. To this day, both camps have fans that can't stand the other, as well as those who enjoy both genres. The two styles would combine a number of times to form such sub-genres as thrash metal, crossover and metalcore, the last of which was not always the easiest to define, but if ever one band could be described perfectly by the metalcore tag, it's today's featured group, Hatebreed.

Hatebreed began life in 1994 in New Haven, Connecticut, though some members hailed from Bridgeport, consisting of vocalist Jamey Jasta, guitarists Larry Dwyer, Jr. & Wayne Lozinak, bass player Chris Beattie and drummer Dave Russo. The quintet recorded three songs for a demo tape, which was handed out to members of the local hardcore scene before being included in a split release with Neglect. They followed this with an EP, "Under the Knife" in 1996 which included the three songs once more, as well as four other songs, all of which except the title track would later be re-recorded.

The demo proved popular among the hardcore underground and the following year, Hatebreed released their debut full length album, "Satisfaction Is the Death of Desire," through Victory Records. It was their first release to feature new guitarist Lou "Boulder" Richards, who replaced Lozinak and new drummer Jamie "Pushbutton." The album sold better than any other debut in the history of Victory Records and earned them attention from established bands such as Slayer, Napalm Death and Entombed, who booked the group to support them, as well as from Universal Records, who eventually signed the band.

Before the band could record their sophomore album, they were forced to recruit new members leading them to bring in drummer Matt Byrne and guitarists Lou "Boulder" Richards & Sean Martin. After a five year wait however, Hatebreed released their second full length, "Perseverance," which included the song, "I Will Be Heard," perhaps their best known track, thanks in part to its inclusion in the movie, "XXX." The album also featured a more metallic sound than their previous releases, alienating some of their early fan base.

Only a year later, the band released their third album, "The Rise of Brutality," their first record as a quartet, which received a number of positive reviews and peaked at number 30 on the Billboard album charts. It also contained a number of fan favourites such as the record's first single, "This Is Now," "Beholder of Justice" and "Tear It Down," the last of which was nominated for a Grammy. They then brought in second guitarist Frank Novinec and promoted the record with a string of high profile performances, including a well received set on the "Unholy Alliance" European tour, which was co-headlined by Slayer and Slipknot and also featured Mastodon, as well as performing at such festivals as Download and Ozzfest.

In August 2006, Hatebreed released their fourth studio album, "Supremacy," their first for their new label, Roadrunner. Once more, the group garnered positive reviews for their work and reached number 31 on the Billboard album charts, as well as breaking into the top ten in the British rock and metal charts. A tragic irony was that the overall theme of "Supremacy," according to Jasta, was overcoming depression and other such harmful metal illnesses and disorders, but only a month after its release, former guitarist Lou Richards committed suicide.

Once more, heavy touring followed, with a return to Ozzfest booked in 2007, as well as appearing at the 2008 edition of Wacken Open Air. That same year, the band left Roadrunner and signed with Koch Records, with their first release for the company being a live DVD entitled, "Live Dominance." The next year, they brought back Wayne Lozinak to replace the outgoing Sean Martin and released two more albums, the first a covers record entitled, "For the Lions," which saw the group cover the likes of Metallica, Suicidal Tendencies, Sick Of It All and Bad Brains. A short tour followed, including stops at European festivals such as Graspop Metal Meeting and two videos were filmed for "Ghosts of War" and "Thirsty and Miserable," by Slayer and Black Flag respectively.

Four months after, "For the Lions," Hatebreed released their self-titled, fifth album of original material. While generally not as well received as their previous albums, it still earned some decent reviews and hit the album charts in a number of countries such as France, Netherlands, Belgium and Germany, as well the United States and the United Kingdom where they had experienced chart success before.

Touring then came hard and heavy for Hatebreed, embarking on a number of tours and appearing at a number of festivals for three years, before they finally released their sixth album, "The Divinity of Purpose" in 2013. The album saw them enter the top 20 in the Billboard album charts and featured artwork by Eliran Kantor, a German artist who previously produced album covers for Testament, Sigh, Sodom and Atheist among others.

More touring followed, before Hatebreed returned to the studio to record their seventh album, "The Concrete Confessional," which was released worldwide through Nuclear Blast, who had released, "Divinity of Purpose" in Europe and featured art from Marcelo Vasco, who had also worked for Slayer, Soulfly and Dark Funeral. The album was another global success, this time appearing in the Australian and Canadian charts, as well as the previously mentioned countries. Since then, the band has been promoting the record, with more summer festivals scheduled for this year. While they may not be everyone's cup of tea, Hatebreed's longevity and work ethic have made them one of the biggest names in both the hardcore and metal scene.

Hatebreed - "Before Dishonor"

Hatebreed - "I Will Be Heard"

Hatebreed - "This Is Now"

Hatebreed - "Defeatist"

Hatebreed - "Thirsty and Miserable"

Hatebreed - "In Ashes They Shall Reap"

Hatebreed - "Honor Never Dies"

Hatebreed - "Looking Down the Barrel of Today"

Diamond Oz's avatar

Ollie Hynes has been a writer for Metal Underground.com since 2007 and a metal fan since 2001, going as far as to travel to other countries and continents for metal gigs.

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1 Comment on "Sunday Old School: Hatebreed"

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1. BrianSD writes:

First 4 or so albums are still great. Can't say I've heard much of the past two or three. Just a few tracks. Tattoo the Earth and the time they coheadlined the 2nd stage with Down at Ozzfest were insane

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